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'Super committee' formed to dig into bridge, Sandy scandals

New Jersey lawmakers will announce Tuesday they will create a special joint Assembly-Senate committee to investigate the George Washington Bridge traffic jams and other alleged "abuses of government power" by the Christie administration, legislative sources tell NBC News.

The announcement comes after days of intense behind-the-scenes negotiations among Democratic leaders of the Assembly and state Senate. The move will be announced Tuesday morning, just before Christie's inaugural proceedings are to begin, the sources said.    

Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg will serve as co-chair of the new panel along with Assemblyman John Wisniewski, who has been heading the Assembly panel. Under the agreement, the  New Jersey legislature will meet in special session Thursday to authorize the new joint "super committee" — just one week after the Assembly and Senate authorized their own separate panels.    

The new joint committee will have "12 or 13" members and be heavily dominated by Democrats, who control both chambers, the sources said.

Republicans — who have criticized Wisniewski as overly partisan — have so far been allotted only four seats on the new panel.

Former federal proseutor Reid Schar, hired by the Assembly panel last week, will continue to serve as special counsel to the new special committee.

NBC News and our partners at NowThisNews break down the main facts surrounding the Chris Christie bridge controversy.

 

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